It's hard to believe, but the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade is older than our Constitution when the parade started, back in 1766, Manhattan was still a Dutch colony. But there'll be no confusion as to which culture is being celebrated this Saturday, when even New Yorkers with no connection to the Emerald Isle will bust out their best green gear and rowdiest attitude. And, although St. Pat's has for years been everyone's favorite day to get wasted, this time around the parade will not be without its more somber moments: The event pays tribute to the "heroes of 9/11," and will feature a prayer from Cardinal Edward Egan at the 64th Street viewing point. Mayor Bloomberg will also be marching (he's apparently going to be in town this weekend). Oh, yeah if you're gay, make other plans.
The route starts at Fifth Avenue and 44th Street at 11am on Saturday, March 16 and makes its way uptown to 86th Street over the course of about three hours.
St. Patrick's Day Spring Fling Four-Miler
Green T-shirts will be given to each runner in this shamrock run.
March 17 at 9:30am; Central Park, East Dr. near 99th St.; 212-860-4455; preregistration: $20, $14; day-f: $30, $20 members.
Shane MacGowan in Concert
Even if the perpetually inebriated Shane MacGowan doesn't love the revelry of St. Patrick's Day ("It's the Irish at their absolute worst," he growls), the former Pogues front man is still quite happy about playing a gig at Roseland on March 16. "All the fighting and puking and heavy drinking and shitting will go on outside," MacGowan practically slurs, "but inside there'll be lots of dancing and jumping around. A great time will be had by everyone, for sure." That's likely to be the result of MacGowan's wide-ranging program, covering everything from folk standards ("Dirty Old Town") to shambling Pogues favorites ("If I Should Fall From Grace With God"). "Irish music covers a wide range of music, ya know," MacGowan says. "It's not exactly a restricted genre."
March 16 at 8pm; Roseland Ballroom,
239 W. 52nd St.;
"The Irish and the Brooklyn Bridge"
A St. Patrick's weekend tour visits lesser-known downtown sites and explores Irish contributions to the Brooklyn Bridge.
March 16 and 17 at noon and 2:30pm; call 212-465-3331 for more information.
Irish Hell's Kitchen
GWhat's now known as Clinton was once a hotbed of Irish culture and politics. St. Malachy's Church (the "Actors Chapel") and the Irish Arts Center are among the stops.
March 17 at 1pm and 3:15pm. Meet at the northeast corner of Eighth Ave. and 49th St.; 212-265-2663; $5.